Friday, January 30, 2004
You probably know him as the bald, sunken-eyed Uncle Fester on the 1960s sitcom "The Addams Family." But Jackie Coogan was the most popular child star of the Jazz Age. His co-starred with Charlie Chaplin in his first feature-length movie, "The Kid," and starred in the 1925 drama "The Rag Man" (7 p.m., Turner Classic Movies) as an orphan adopted by a vendor, who eventually turns the enterprising tyke into his business partner. TCM is airing a digitally re-mastered version of "The Rag Man" featuring a brand-new score by Linda Martinez, the winner of the network's fourth annual young composer's contest.
A darling of the silent screen, Coogan was one of the highest-paid actors of the 1920s. But in 1935, when Coogan was supposed to receive the more than $4 million he earned as a child star, he discovered that much of it had been squandered by his mother and stepfather. Coogan's plight inspired California to pass the Child Actor's Bill, known as the Coogan Act, designed to protect juvenile performers from similar abuses.
In addition to "The Addams Family," Coogan appeared in the 1962 military-academy comedy series "McKeever & the Colonel" and the game show "Pantomime Quiz." Coogan died in 1984.
- An informer (Ray Liotta) looks back at his life in the mob in director Martin Scorsese's 1990 drama "GoodFellas" (7 p.m., Lifetime), co-starring Robert De Niro, Joe Pesci and Lorraine Bracco. If you love this masterpiece, you've probably seen it a dozen times. But it's always worth watching again, if only to hear how many creative ways they can alter the film's extraordinarily profane dialogue to make it palatable to basic cable viewers, and to see how Lifetime promotes this violent drama as a women's movie.
- It's hard to believe that it has been a whole year since Jimmy Kimmel departed the vulgar antics of "The Man Show" to be host of his very own network talk show, "Jimmy Kimmel" (11:05 p.m., ABC). To celebrate, Kimmel travels to Houston to survey the festivities preceding Super Bowl XXXVIII.
Tonight's other highlights
- Cheerleading for God on "Joan of Arcadia" (7 p.m., CBS).
- Ed's needy brother Lloyd (Timothy Busfield) returns on "Ed" (8 p.m., NBC).
- "Monk" (9 p.m., USA) lampoons the "CSI" phenomenon as the star of a popular forensics TV drama falls under suspicion of killing his wife.
Nathan Lane and Ruben Studdard appear on "Late Show with David Letterman" (10:35 p.m., CBS) ... Jay Leno welcomes Arsenio Hall on "The Tonight Show" (10:35 p.m., NBC).